We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Great bistro meal” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Oliveto Cafe and Restaurant

Oliveto Cafe and Restaurant
5655 College Ave, Oakland, CA 94618-1583
510-547-5356
Website
Menu
Improve this listing
Reserve with OpenTable
Oliveto Cafe and Restaurant is not available for your requested time. Choose another time, or search restaurants with availability.
The time you selected has already passed.
Ranked #41 of 1,069 restaurants in Oakland
Price range: $41 - $80
Cuisines: Italian, Contemporary, Californian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Shafter
Transit: Rockridge BART stop is across the street
Godalming, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Great bistro meal”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

Just discovered this area of Oakland - lots of interesting looking restaurants. We sat at the bar and watched the chef cook the meals using the pizza oven. The menu was short and simple and the food freshly cooked. We enjoyed the atmosphere and food and would return and would recommend this place, but would probably try one of the other interesting restaurants in the area first.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

104 reviews from our community

77% Recommend
    46
    35
    11
    6
    6
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Emeryville, California
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Creative and authentic Italian cuisine”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2013

We have always admired Oliveto's combination of creative cuisine and its attention to the traditions of Italian cooking. Chef Jonah Rhodehamel is bringing the kitchen to new heights. (We ran into him and co-owner Maggie Klein while visiting Masseria Il Frantoio in Puglia - they guys are serious students of Italian traditions.) If you're interested in something more casual, their downstairs cafe has superb hand-made pizzas and other casual fare. The wait staff are exceptionally articulate in describing the various dishes and are happy to make recommendations; they have tasted everything on offer. We also appreciate their attention to the sources of their ingredients; family farmers, sustainably-harvested fish, pasture-raised meats. Definitely great for special occasions, but we have gone through long periods of eating there every week.

  • Visited March 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
California
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
20 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
“GASP! Real Italian Food in California?!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2013

The menu changes with the season, (something I believe more restaurants should do) using fresh ingredients and dishes that are extremely flavorful. Of course my favorite time of year to go to Oliveto's is during truffle season, while expensive, its worth every penny. I have now been here about 6 times and I have to say we have yet to be disappointed. We recently had the roast hen rolata, the fig tortelloni and spit roasted rabbit wrapped in pancetta. The location is charming, and you can stroll down the street afterwards to walk off the pasta and poke your head into the new/used bookstore that stays open later than the other stores in the area. Also below the restaurant they have their cafe portion, however, I have not sampled anything on their menu (guessing it must be different). Good wine selection, but have not been bowled over by dessert options. I also recommend making advance reservations, otherwise, you may not get in on a walk-in basis if its a weekend evening.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berkeley
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
“Authentic Italian Food and Great Wine List”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

I have had some of the best meals of my life in this restaurant. The food is based on Umbrian cuisine, and if you haven't been to Umbria this is your chance to taste some of the best Italian food there is. Everything is excellent: Food, wine, service and atmosphere.

Visited February 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sonora, California
Top Contributor
100 reviews 100 reviews
78 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
“Probably the best Italian in Oakland”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2013

First, you have the choice of the cafe downstairs and the restaurant upstairs. Being there for the first time, we opted to do both - a progressive dinner within the same building! Downstairs we focused on the pizza -- delicious, crisp, wonderful toppings! Upstairs we opted for gnocchi in an uni sauce - obviously a bit more upscale and refined. It was an incredible dish, sublime gnocchi in a sauce that was velvety and of the sea but not particularly strong uni flavor - in fact I would not have guessed it had I not ordered it. But delicious! Wines by the glass that rock. Bring your big boy wallet for upstairs, downstairs you will make it through a little cheaper.

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Oliveto Cafe and Restaurant also viewed

 
Oakland, CA
 

Been to Oliveto Cafe and Restaurant? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Oliveto Cafe and Restaurant, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.